Around the world, COVID-19 has put a lot to test. It has questioned our safety nets, health infrastructures, professional patience, body immunity, and now, definitely and silently our most sought careers. The pandemic has brought forth such a strong wave of displacement that even after nearly eight months of its entry in our lives we’ve not been able to make a lot of sense of its long-term impact in our personal or professional lives.
How will it change our daily lives in the future?
How long and to what extent will we deal with the job losses?
How much will university education change in the long run?
What degree will fetch the kind of jobs we want?
Which country will offer the most opportunities in the post-pandemic world?
And most importantly, will the gap between STEM fields and Humanities widen post-COVID?
The gap between STEM and humanities graduates has been a cause for concern since pre-COVID days. According to a study conducted by Emsi, a labour market analytics firm, in 2009-10, the rift between STEM and humanities graduates was negligible. By 2016, undergrads in STEM had increased by 43% while those in humanities had declined by 0.4%.
While one would easily assume that the trend must be continuing in the academic years post 2016 and especially in the COVID era, many university leaders are predicting the contrary. The pandemic has highlighted the need for adaptability, empathy and analytical thinking that will not exclude any groups of people. This need will increase the demand for arts and humanities degrees.